‘a bar at the folies-bergère’

Seeing and being seen: Wet Paint, by Chloë Ashby, reviewed

In this arresting debut novel we follow 26-year-old Eve as she tries to come to terms with the loss of her best friend Grace. Flashbacks punctuate the present day of Eve’s London life, gradually revealing her role in the grim circumstances of Grace’s death. Eve lives in a flatshare with a patronisingly well-meaning couple who give her cheap rent in exchange for cleaning. The awkward dynamic is made worse by Eve’s casual kleptomania (helping herself to Karina’s lipstick, necklace, gloves and dressing gown) and by the inappropriate leers of Bill ‘who likes to start conversations when I’m wrapped in a towel’. At the restaurant where she works as a waitress,